WCW Monday Nitro: September 16, 1996

WCW Fall Brawl is one day behind us now, and just what the heck happened? Everyone’s talking about Sting’s loyalty, and just where he stands. After proving to the team he had never turned his back, and that the nWo had created their own “Sting” (who was not, for the record, Hardbody Harrison) – Sting walked out on his friends, leaving them to rot at the hands of the New World Order. So where does he stand today? More importantly (to me, anyway), is where on earth was he for an ENTIRE WEEK that he couldn’t have taken 2 minutes to check in with his best friend Luger? Sting is JUST as much at fault here as anyone else.
TONY SCHIAVONE and LARRY ZBYSZKO are LIVE LIVE LIVE, because they are LIVE, did we mention LIVE, not like the WWF who is NOT LIVE. Tony shares still shots from last night’s pay-per-view that the nWo won and was the worst day of his life (buy the replay!). Tony apologizes to Sting, personally. Apparently he was in Japan, and he figures we all should have known that. (Well jeez, THAT information would have been helpful. No one in WCW knew this?) Larry refuses to apologize for anything, citing war, and telling Sting he’s too sensitive and perhaps he’d be best served working for Mother Theresa.
JUVENTUD GUERRERA vs. REY MYSTERIO JR. (for the WCW world cruiserweight title)
Juvi lost to Konnan last night, which makes him the #1 contender to the Cruiserweight title apparently. Tony continues to grovel at Sting’s feet, sounding like a pathetic ex-boyfriend at this point. Rey twists Juvi up like a pretzel in some sort of belt-wearing torture rack, but Juvi swings loose and DDT’s the champ for 2. Fallaway slam gets 2. Tony promises Glacier for later tonight; he’s the Aloysius Snuffleupagus of WCW, and quite frankly, I don’t believe him. Juvi springboards at Rey, and takes a dropkick to the gut for his effort. As we hit the commercial, Rey does the springboard rana to the floor spot that always excites.
Back from the break, da Joosy Wan is dropkicking Rey. Springboard spinning heel kick is on point, knocking Rey to the floor, and a baseball slide dropkick leaves him woozy. If THAT wasn’t enough of a quick assault, Juvi flies with an Asai moonsault beautifully! It’s a human game of chess, sez Larry. Wait, what? Back in, Juvi flies at Rey with a springboard 450 (whoa!), and appears to be in complete control. Rey is positioned up top, and the super rana gets 2. Do NOT get invested, because …
HUNDREDS OF NWO FANS are holding Propaganda in the back, celebrating the big win from last night.
Back in the ring, Juvi has Rey up top for a powerbomb, but he counters with a rana in mid-move(!!!) for the win at 7:00. Fantastic match, Juvi finally delivers. ****
MIKE TENAY is with CHRIS BENOITMONGO MCMICHAEL, and DEBRA. Mongo is livid at Sting and Luger, saying he warned them not to let down the Horsemen. Benoit orders them to prepare to pay the price. I’m sure all of this will help WCW defeat the nWo.
Here is a video package on Glacier! He talks about his secret helmet, that helps him derive power. Bruce Lee gave him a burning desire, so he travelled thousands of miles to Japan, where he found an old Japanese master. He learned from his Sensei, as well as the best warriors in Japan, and he has developed his own style. His armour is a tribute to warriors from thousands of years ago. His belt is for the universe. I can’t take him remotely seriously, his shield makes it look like Krang is living in his midsection.
NICK PATRICK is once again the referee of a DDP match, which is getting to be a lot deeper than just a co-incidence. Between DDP’s mysterious rich benefactor (Ted DiBiase?), his ties to Hall and Nash from yesteryear, and the fact the nWo clearly had a mole letting them in and out of the building in the early stages of their time in the company, it’s looking more and more like DDP could well be one of the key pieces behind their success. I don’t understand why he’s wasting his time with the Guerreros, but it’s good to keep a low profile when you’re up to no good. Page tries to throw a shoulderblock at Train, which goes about as well as you might imagine. His response to running into a brick wall is to threaten every fan in the building with violence. A necksnap changes the tide, and a top rope shoulderblock puts him in control. Page hits a swinging neckbreaker, but Train launches him off at 2. He hulks up, which Page easily stops with a spinning clothesline and makes me giggle. Diamond Cutter is blocked, and a belly to belly leaves Page gasping for air. Lazy sitdown slam sets up a powerslam, but Page kicks out. Train Wreck should do it, but Page kicks out of his move.
Backstage, THE NWO LACKEYS are roping off the merchandise booths. Apparently the Ice Train / DDP match ends at 4:41, but lord knows we don’t need to bother with that when we can watch this.
So what happened, apparently, is that Page yanked the towel from Long’s hand and threw it, and Nick Patrick called for a submission. Train threatens Patrick with violence, but Long holds him off.
Back to the merchandise booth, the fans hold up signs reading “WHO WANTS THIS CRAP?”, and start setting up nWo gear instead.
Meanwhile, holy hell, THE 1-2-3 KID is sitting in the front row! Tony says he was recently released from the WWF, and Larry figures if he’s from the WWF he must be nWo.
SUPER CALO vs. KONNAN (with Jimmy Hart) (for the Mexican Heavyweight title)
Like the warm aroma of a bean burrito, the scent of Mexican sends MIKE TENAYtripping over himself to get behind the commentary table, even though both these guys, and I say this respectfully, stink. Konnan’s crappy rolling clothesline is blocked with a crucifix for 2. Calo blocks a wheelbarrow with an armdrag, and holy s---, he comes barrelling at Konnan with a suicide senton through the middle ropes! He looked like a cannonball. That was fun, and Konnan can’t allow that, so he puts on some STF-teabagging thing. That’s stopped when he goes to the powerbomb. Calo swings back with a headscissor takeover, and on the floor Calo comes at him with a springboard plancha. Back in, Konnan hits the Scorpion Deathdrop for 2. Rolling clothesline sets up another ridiculous hold, which Konnan can do with no arms. He spends the entire time calling out the nWo. Konnan goes up, but Calo cuts him off. He hits a rana, but Konnan’s fat ass falls on TOP of him on the way down. Ouch! Calo sends Konnan to the floor, hits a slingshot baseball slide, and follows with a slingshot senton. Back up, missile dropkick to the floor! Back in, Calo tries something, but winds up falling on his head. Konnan, ever concerned about Calo’s safety, hits a violent fisherman’s buster. Double leg slam is bridged, but Calo kicks out. Splash mountain finishes for Jose Jogan at 6:46. Okay, they USUALLY stink. ***
Tenay gets all up in the grill of THE 1-2-3 KID, demanding to know where he’s been. Kid says he’s been in Japan, and he heard Nitro’s hot as hell and he wants to check it out. Kid asks who won War Games last night? That pisses Tenay off, saying he knows goddamn well the nWo won. Kid does an exaggerated gosh darnit, with a s--- eating grin on his face.
What the hell is this Moo Match of the Week level crap doing on my Nitro? And more specifically, Armstrongs? REALLY? We’re still going back to them? NICK PATRICK referees, and if he wants to call in the nWo, I’m cool with that. Morrus hits a shoulerblock that sends Armstrong to the floor, and in his deluded state about how the match is going, Armstrong kisses his guns. Fans chant for Ric Flair. Armstrong starts armdragging Morrus around, and celebrates like he just won the World Title. Well, we all need goals. Morrus avalanches Armstrong, and does his hyena laugh. A second attempt misses, Brad celebrates, and Morrus clotheslines his face off. A powerslam takes us to the 60 second count-down for hour #2. No Laughing Matter isn’t enough for Morrus, who stomps around for a bit before going to the pinfall, and Armstrong rolls him backwards for the win at3:56. No more of this, thanks. 1/2*
ERIC BISCHOFF and “SOBER” BOBBY HEENAN say hi, and go to commercial.
MIKE TENAY brings out RANDY SAVAGE to kick off hour #2; I guess Gene’s on vacation. Perhaps in Japan even, although I would bet WCW isn’t sure. Tenay recaps last night’s match between Savage and Giant, and wants to talk about his title match next month. Savage says the nightmare continues, and he’s a million miles below rock bottom – but he and Hogan are alive, and it’s gonna get really scary. He’s down to his last marble, he figures Hogan can’t take what he’s got.
In the parking lot, THE NWO welcome “Sting” to their gang. Hogan says there’s no one left to beat up, and they just want their own show – nWo Nitro.
These two squared off about a year earlier on the 2nd ever Nitro – so we were clearly due for the blow-off. It’s still coming to a head a lot faster than Norton’s feud with frickin’ Ice Train. Norton rakes the eyes to keep Savage down, while Bischoff talks about the fact that he signed an agreement awhile back with New Japan where most of his big stars are going to be gone next week, leaving Savage alone with the nWo. He says he didn’t realize when he signed it he’d be leaving Savage out to dry, and apologizes to Randy. Norton hits a powerbomb for 2. A powerslam gets 2. Tenay correctly points out that just a couple of months ago, we were unsure of Savage’s mental state to the point we were locking him out of the building, and now we’re relying on him to bring back the World Title? Savage comes back with a clothesline, and dumps Norton. He’s tossed from guardrail to guardrail, rolls him back in, and then slams him on the other side of the ring to give those fans a show. Back in, Norton hits a DDT for 2. Norton hits his shoulderbreaker, which is his finish – but Savage rolls to the floor in pain, avoiding the pinfall. Norton tries to use Savage as a battering ram in the ring post, but Savage pushes him into it instead and steals the chair away fromDAVE PENZER. He starts swinging at EVERYONE, hitting Norton over the head a few times, and the referee calls a DQ at 6:42NICK PATRICK runs down to ringside to try and stop him, and Savage decks HIM too. *
Well holy hell, here he is. After 6 long months of hype, Glacier is in fact HERE. He poses. He roars. He causes snow. He is GLACIER. Glacier does a traditional bow to his opponent, but when Bubba rushes in, Glacier sweeps the legs out of place. In fact, everytime Bubba charges, Glacier just takes him to the mat. Bubba blocks a kick, but Glacier does a vertical enzuigiri instead. He tries a leapfrog, but Bubba slams him and celebrates. Of course, Glacier is right back on his feet, firing with kicks at rapid speed. Cryonic Kick finishes at 2:45. Did I mention the entire match was done in a dark-blue hue? Because it was. That seems a little unfair, far more so than anything Nick Patrick has been involved with. *
STING comes down to ringside now, which apparently is not on the format. He turns his back to the hard camera, and demands the chance to explain himself. He was on a plane from LA to Atlanta, and when he tuned into Nitro, he thought it was a replay because the fake Sting did a very convincing job. He saw everyone doubt the Stinger, from friends, to announcers, everyone. Sting decided to go into seclusion and see what everyone thought. And on WCW Saturday Night, he saw more doubts – so he knew he had to get to Fall Brawl and hash it out. All he got from those folks was more doubts. He says he’s been Lex’s babysitter, giving him the benefit of the doubt a thousand times in the last 12 months alone. He gave WCW his blood, his sweat, and his tears. For everyone who never stopped believing, he promises to stand by them. But for everyone else who doubted him, they can stick it. He’s a free agent going forward, and will pop in when everyone least suspects it.
With that, we officially lay to rest Classic Sting.
I mentioned at the top that I took issue with some of Sting’s behavior, and I do so even more now. Sting behaved like a 13-year old girl throughout all of this. Going into seclusion rather than just clearing the air? Waiting and seeing what people “thought”? Give me a break.
Of course, I forgive it all because things are about to get sooooo good.
Anderson and Flair are trying to bring Liz to the ring, but she is refusing to enter the arena anymore because she’s scared to death of the nWo. Arn leaves her alone in the back if she’s gonna be a pain, which would seem to be far less safe than staying with her friends. Meanwhile, at ringside, THE 1-2-3 KID presses a button, and thousands of leaflets come falling from the ceiling. THE NWO LACKEYSare marching around in the crowd with their campaign posters. Arn has no patience for any of this, and starts ripping stuff up as we take a commercial.
Upon return, the litter is still falling. Bischoff has acquired some. “WE BEAT YOU, NOW YOU’RE PAYING ALL THE BILLS.” “NWO, WE’LL DO TV OUR WAY.”
The match finally gets underway, and it should go without saying that NICK PATRICK is the assigned official. Arn’s eye is taped up from the assault the night before. It’s hard to concentrate with the trash falling, but we’ll do our best. Jericho and Arn start, which would have been a fun feud. Jericho hits a missile dropkick for 2. A spinning heel kick sends Arn to the floor. Bischoff relays a story from the night before, about negotiating with Ted DiBiase before the PPV. DiBiase refused to have the nWo wrestle the match unless Bischoff agreed to give them their own segment on TV going forward if they won, and Bischoff had to or no match would have happened. Riddle me this, Eric. Isn’t the whole idea here that WCW wants the nWo to go away? You don’t negotiate with terrorists, it’s the first rule. I swear to god, WCW, between Sting sulking, Bischoff giving away the farm, Benoit causing s--- with anyone who might want to ally with the Horsemen, they’re doing it to themselves. They could not be more disorganized. And yes, I’m ignoring the fact that Bagwell’s beating the piss out of Flair in front of an arena of fans who are desperate to see the man do his thing. Flair regroups in a pile of nWo posters, and comes back with a kneedrop to the face of Jericho. Arn stomps a mudhole, and catapults Jericho’s neck across the bottom rope. Flair uses a brief distraction to choke out Jericho, while Arn keeps Patrick engaged in a long chat. The Horsemen double team Jericho with an illegally assisted abdominal stretch, and upon release, Arn sets to start tenderizing the leg. Don’t forget though, matches don’t matter anymore, because…
In the back, THE 1-2-3 KID is welcomed into THE NWO. Giant plays the tape from last week of Sting yelling that they used to fool WCW, and everyone yuks it up.
Meanwhile, Bagwell is getting the hot tag when we get back, and he hits Flair with about 500 consecutive punches. He misses his buddy Jericho eating a DDT on the floor from Anderson. A fisherman’s buster is held for an attempted pin, but Bagwell’s got Anderson, not Flair. Woman rakes the eyes of Bagwell, Anderson DDTs Bagwell, and Flair struts around before slapping on the Figure Four with glee. He cheats anyway, using Woman for leverage, as Bagwell’s counted down at 11:10. **1/2
CHRIS BENOIT and MONGO MCMICHAEL (with Debra McMichael) vs. LEX LUGER (in a handicapable match)
Sting isn’t here because he’s squirting more tears than an audience at a Bruno Mars concert, so Luger’s left on his own. Benoit stomps Luger into a puddle of mush, but he quickly regenerates and does the same to Benoit. Running clothesline is good, but Mongo decks Luger from behind and Benoit hits a snap suplex. Loud chops are Luger’s receipt for dropping the ball. Bischoff lists about a dozen stars who are going to be in Japan next week, and Heenan gives him hell for continually announcing to the nWo exactly who’s MIA. Bischoff’s defense is that they already know; but if they aren’t privy to WCW personel moves, why on earth SHOULD they know? You’d almost start to think Bischoff is trying to help them, but that would be silly, ha ha. Luger manages to come back, and puts Benoit in the Torture Rack for what feels like an eternity. RIC FLAIR and ARN ANDERSON hit the ring now for the DQ at 6:00, but Benoit looks like the toughest guy on the roster right now holding on for about 30 seconds in that hold. * All 4 guys beat down Luger violently, but before we see how it ends…

Once again, THE NWO is back in their limo. Kid is renamed Six, since he’s the 6thguy. That seems lazy, but we’ll run with it. They plot to take over Nitro since everyone’s MIA next week. Bischoff apologizes to everyone for any role he had in causing this mess, and signs off.